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News: Tewateno Guiders Suspended, GGC launches legal action

by on September 21, 2011

Girl Guide camp set to re-open
By MARG. BRUINEMAN, Barrie Examiner
Posted Sept 16, 2011

SPRINGWATER TWP. — A Girl Guide camp on sprawling acreage north of Barrie is set to re-open next week after an extended closure.

And although its re-opening is good news, it comes under the cloud of legal action.

Camp Tewateno is a 100-acre pastoral site along Gill Road, straddling Matheson Creek on the outskirts of Midhurst, belonging to the Girl Guides of Canada.

The camp originally opened in the mid-1990s, but has been closed for several months.

The organization said it has done the work necessary to satisfy Springwater Township officials and is set to reopen next week.

The latest orders to complete work and obtain building permits were issued a year ago.

Township officials said work was required to address structural, health and safety concerns.

The site is now again considered safe and ready for use.

But Guide officials say they are launching legal action against a local group for failing to release money it raised for property upgrades.

In earlier interviews, members of the On My Honour group said they had raised $250,000 and refused to turn it over to the guiding organization for fear that it would sell the property for much-needed funds.

“We have commenced this legal action to uphold our fiduciary responsibility and to finally resolve the situation with the former Camp Tewateno development committee,” Girl Guides of Canada’s chief commissioner said Chris Burton in a news release.

Members of the committee are also no longer welcome in the Guide organization and their memberships have been suspended.

Members of both sides could not be reached for comment on Thursday.

The press release does not stipulate if legal action has been filed or who might be named in the legal action.

Attempts to resolve the issue through discussion and mediation were refused by the local group, according to the release.

The environmentally protected property was acquired in 1994 after a local group spent years fundraising so area girls would have a place of their own to camp.

The local group also raised approximately $250,000 to upgrade the property and build a lodge. But when the Girl Guides organization changed its structure and began selling about half of its camps, the local group refused to relinquish control.

One Comment
  1. Paula permalink

    Great to hear that Camp Tewateno is reopening.

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